Joseph Stalin had the KGB. The East Germans had the Stasi. In Havana, you’re watched by both the DGI and by a coteries of abuelas sitting by street-facing windows.
In Miami, it’s Big Brother Joe Carollo and his newly created Code Enforcement Task Force.
Under the cover of reining in abuse, Commissioner Joe Carollo led the charge to create a Code Enforcement Task Force. It’s stated goal was to catch those who flout the City’s building and zoning codes and to root out those who protect them.
In reality, this Frankenstein-inspired body was an abomination designed to selectively target one political enemy, businessman Bill Fuller, electrified to life by Joe Carollo’s never-ending vindictiveness and his devilish skill for bullying compromised souls into following behind with pitchforks and torches.
As District 3 Commissioner, he has stitched together the support of his fellow commissioners and a compliant city attorney intent on saving her job, who has become more like a lab assistant named Igor.
Like angry villagers in a 1930s black and white horror movie, some in the body politic were eager to join Joe Carollo in his hunt for monsters. Little did they realize that the monster was leading their mob.
Joe Carollo was exposed, pointing his fingers at others to avoid being caught breaking the law.
An inspection of the outside of his Coconut Grove home resulted in five violations for work done without the proper permits. The violations included the un-permitted cutting of a banyan tree.
Carollo first claimed that the City’s laws didn’t apply to him then he said he got bad advice from an attorney, who was conveniently not named. The truth is that the villagers should be outside and inside the door.
The inspectors never got to go inside Joe’s house. How many more violations would they have found if they had crossed the threshold into his dungeon lair?
If there is to be a Task Force, then Joe Carollo must be first in line for scrutiny. How is the public supposed to know if the Commissioner is being required to pull the proper permits, make the necessary fixes and pay the proper fines. Who has protected Joe Carollo for 20 years from pulling a permit for construction work on his Coconut Grove home?
Government works best when it is fair. When it’s used for revenge on opponents and to favor those in power, it becomes the bride of tyranny.
The Task Force needs to go back to Carollo’s Morris Lane house. There may be 20 years’ worth of un-permitted “improvements” inside. We won’t know until the City goes over the house with magnifying glasses in hand.
If the Task Force doesn’t start with Joe Carollo, then it will be exposed as the mob following the monster.